Just another charity shop?

Just another charity shop?


With 21 charity shops along Gloucester Road alone, and hundreds across the city, what makes ours so special? Like any charity shop, we sell donated goods to make money for our cause, supporting formerly homeless people by providing a home and work. What many of our customers donate realise is that the people serving them used to be homeless themselves.

For many who experience homelessness, loss of self-esteem is a major obstacle they must overcome. So people who live in the Emmaus Bristol community, our companions can carry out meaningful work in our social enterprises, making a real contribution, as well as building up their work skills and confidence.

This is a core principle of the Emmaus movement, which began in 1951 when some of the first Emmaus companions in Paris found out that founder Abbe Pierre had been asking for food donations. Feeling that begging compromised their self-respect, these first companions became “rag pickers”, collecting things that people no longer wanted and selling them on. This was the start of the first Emmaus social enterprise.

To this day we run re-use and recycling enterprises, not just selling donations, but also fixing and re-using where we can to help reduce landfill. Buying from us doesn’t just raise money for a good cause, it’s a practical and direct way to help somebody rebuild their life after homelessness.

We have three shops across Bristol, including a pop-up shop on Brislington Hill, and also run house clearance and electrical appliance testing services. Pop in for a browse and a chat with our companions Monday-Saturday, or call ahead on 0117 954 0886 (Stokes Croft) or 0117 963 3033 (Bedminster) to see if we have what you need in stock.

3 thoughts on “Just another charity shop?

  1. Anon says:

    Whilst I recognise the good intentions, I will personally never step inside an Emmaus shop. I rang Emmaus once about helping a disabled family member to apply for a job with them. They said “we can’t employ disabled people, we don’t have ramps”. Excellent understanding of the word disability. I humbley educated this person about the specific nature of the disability and how they could do the job perfectly but needed the application process to be changed as a reasonable adjustment (employment law) – and got nothing but terse responses and rudeness in response. Good luck to you.

    1. master says:

      We have forwarded your comment to Emmaus.

    2. Hi anon
      At Emmaus Bristol we are committed to diversity and equality and we are happy to make reasonable adjustments to application procedures and working arrangements to suit people with disabilities. You don’t say when the incident was, or whether it was Emmaus Bristol, but do let me know if this is something you’d like me to look in to.

      Best wishes, Jessica

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